Attic Insulation Options Supply Different Pros and Cons

Attic insulation plays a important role in dwelling energy performance. In reality, most building scientists agree that the attic needs to be the primary “goal” space for insulation and air-sealing upgrades. Most properties are constructed with code-required minimum levels of attic insulation which might be far beneath current recommendations established by the U.S. Dept. of Energy.

Homeowners contemplating an attic insulation improve have a number of various insulation supplies to consider. Each attic insulating possibility has distinct advantages and limitations. Understanding these execs and cons may also help you select the perfect insulation upgrade in your attic.

Fiberglass batts

Fiberglass batt insulation is standard because it is affordable and universally available. No matter age, many houses have attics insulated with fiberglass batts. The batts are typically put in between attic ground joists, and unfaced batts are extra frequent than faced batts in attic installations.

PROS: More affordable than other types of attic insulation. Finest type of insulation for DIYers to install. Not like blown insulation, batts might be lifted up and moved to provide entry to the ceiling below, can lights and ceiling-mounted vent fans. Current batt insulation can often be left in place when blown insulation is added to extend general R-value within the attic.

CONS: Troublesome to install accurately round obstructions. Voids the place insulation is lacking contribute to important energy loss. Multiple layers of batt insulation are required to attain really helpful R-values in most elements of the country; this makes it not possible to use the attic for storage except particular platforms are constructed previous to insulation installation. Fiberglass insulation cannot stop air movement.

Blown insulation

Two essential types of blown (or blow-in) insulation are commonly used: cellulose and free-fill fiberglass. Both sorts are designed to be put in using special blowing equipment.

PROS: Installation can be completed rapidly and affordably. Blown insulation removal near me typically leads to extra complete coverage than is possible with fiberglass batts.

CONS: A thick layer of insulation (at least 16 in. for northern parts of the U.S.) is required, and this makes it impossible to use the attic space for storage unless special platforms are constructed prior to installing the insulation. Cellulose and free-fill fiberglass insulation can’t cease air movement.

Spray foam

Professional spray foam insulation contractors typically insulate an attic by applying a thick layer of spray foam between the rafters. Two forms of foam are used: open-cell and closed-cell. Opinions fluctuate as to which sort is finest in an attic installation, but closed-cell spray foam is used more frequently.

PROS: Closed-cell spray foam provides the best R-worth per in. (about R-6) of any attic insulation. It also creates an air and moisture barrier, so it eliminates the need for separate air-sealing work. Insulating beneath the roof deck as a substitute of on the attic floor frees up attic area for storage and other purposes. This strategy additionally improves the effectivity of HVAC components (like air handlers and ductwork) located in the attic.

CONS: Most expensive attic insulation. A thick layer of froth utilized to the underside of the roof sheathing can trap moisture and cause sheathing to rot.

Inflexible foam

Inflexible foam hasn’t been used as extensively for attic insulation until a most recent development. In a single distinctive system, a proprietary rigid foam panel is fastened to the underside of attic rafters, forming an air and thermal barrier.

PROS: Gives all the advantages of spray foam, with the extra good thing about sustaining attic ventilation. The potential for roof sheathing moisture damage is eliminated. The inflexible foam is faced with a radiant barrier that displays heat for extra energy financial savings -one other benefit over spray foam.

CONS: The system is available in limited areas, so it’s not as broadly available as spray foam. Installation value is greater than fiberglass batts and blown insulation, however aggressive with spray foam.